The Power of Positive Thinking

There are so many books, websites and podcasts on the magic of positive thinking that it’s surprising we’re not all walking around chanting positive affirmations all day.

Yes, 2016 has been an unfortunate year, one thing after another seems to be dragging the news down and the only antidote to bad news is probably avoiding the Internet and not switching the TV on. But can positive thinking really help? Or is it just new age nonsense?

You really do attract what you give out. If you’re a generally happy person, you tend to see the good in everything and the same goes for a misery guts.

Try telling someone that their bad luck is caused by their negativity isn’t advisable. Even if you really believe that you attract what you send out, telling someone this when they are having a hard time may result in you not having many friends. However, logically there’s is some truth in the idea that you attract what you think about.

Our brains have to deal with a huge volume of information being thrown at them at once, all day. We’re constantly processing sounds, smells and sights, random thoughts and ideas and even though the human brain is highly sophisticated (well, in some people) it doesn’t have the capacity to focus on everything at once. The only way it can manage it all is to filter some of the information out and concentrate on what it believes (or YOU believe) to be the most important things.

That’s why when you’re in a noisy environment you can still concentrate on the person you’re talking to, or when you’re really absorbed in a task at work, or a film or book, you don’t notice other things going on around you.

You set up filters based on how you perceive the world, too. You know those days where everything goes wrong and all the traffic lights are red? They probably were. But you missed the good stuff as you’d already decided today was going to be a bad day. You’ve set up a filter in your mind, to look for events that back up your belief that today is going to be a bad day. Your mind is convinced today is going to be a bad day and you’re only looking for evidence that backs your idea up. You won’t get out of that funk until you stop telling yourself that today is a bad day and start looking for evidence that it’s actually better than you first thought!

Being grumpy also helps to attract other people who are miserable. Have you ever noticed the way that when you’re moaning, you find that other people join in and the misery grows? Yes, misery DOES love company. Your negative thoughts are sending for back up!

It’s not easy to turn a bad mood into a good one, but when you feel miserable and want to snap out of it, try a baby step. You can’t go from “I have no money and pay day is a week away,” to “Life is wonderful” straight away but you can change things up slightly by saying, “I have no money in my account BUT I will sort this out and until then there’s always chocolate.”

One last quote on positive thinking …”A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.” – Herm Albright.

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